Wednesday, October 12, 2011

the relationship between man and dog

>> justice, my best friend foday's dog, died in my parlor. he had been sleeping there nearly all day long, would go outside to use the bathroom and come back inside and sleep in the exact same spot. it was a particularly dark night for both of us, foday holding justice in his arms and crying, me next to him rubbing his back and trying not to do the same. but our relationship with dogs is unique in our village, perhaps in sierra leone. the majority conception here a simple one, that a dog provides security. you give dogs food, and the dog will protect you to ensure that it continues to receive food. i believe that this is true, but that it betrays a critical element, that of affection. justice does not wag his tail and bark happily, tink does not run at full speed down a road, queen does not whine at the front door until i let him in because they are hungry. they care about me / us the same way that we care about them. when i see cruelty against animals, as i have been seeing since my arrival here, it pains me, but i have come to accept that i cannot change it and that my only outlet is to treat my dogs the way i wish all of them were treated here. i feed them, give them attention, and recognize that they are more than security, that they are family. thank you, justice. i love and miss you all.

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